Kirksville SAA Uses Grant to Raise Funds for Guatemala Medical Mission
Gala event more than doubled the AAOA Special Projects Grant Received
By Andrew P. Peck for advocates4dos.org
In October 2016, the Student Advocate Association A.T. Still University of Kirksville Missouri held a gala to raise money for students and residents to volunteer in Guatemala. Using a $1,350 Special Projects Grant from the Advocates for the American Osteopathic Association, the SAA planned their event which raised $4,608.46—enough to cover the expenses of a medical student and an internal medicine intern on an outreach mission to providing birthing kits and basic medical supplies to remote villages.
Led by Melodie Stocks, DO, a Kirksville-based OB/GYN physician, the annual medical mission follows the work of the Cross Commission, an outreach group founded by Americans in Guatemala. This year Dr. Stocks will be joined by Dr. Mercy Fultang, internal medicine intern, and Kyle Rollins, OMS4 thanks to the fundraising success of the Kirksville SAA.
“For students and residents, this is an amazing opportunity to provide care in a severely underserved area,” Dr. Stocks said. “We have toured the local hospital, providing exposure to a developing-world healthcare system.”
Led by the efforts of Kirksville SAA board members Christa Cox and Millena Marler, a gala event took place at the Kirksville Country Club. The gathering of about 80 members of the local community including 65 physicians featured four guest speakers. The presentations centered on personal experiences within the osteopathic profession.
“It was an amazing evening,” Cox said. “We exceeded our fundraising goals which was really great.”
The group enlisted the help of 29 business sponsors and held a silent auction for a wide range of items include crafts, homemade goods, gift cards, and free golf at the country club.
Cox attributed the success of the event to the generosity and spirit of the local osteopathic medical community.
“We utilized the connections we had and that really helped,” Cox said. “We were able to save some money in setting up the event and that made a huge difference.”